A couple of years back, George Clooney came to my town (and, in fact, to my very neighborhood) to shoot some scenes for a film he was doing.
And since we all love George, I felt compelled to snap some pictures of him in various hot spots in my little community. So I posted pictures of George all around the area – at our favorite greasy spoon, in the local ice cream parlor, at the park – on my Facebook page. And my FB friends (especially the ladies) were all so impressed and excited that I had been able to capture him on (digital) film.
Except that I hadn’t. I couldn’t get anywhere near Mr. Clooney! And, to be honest, I didn’t even try. But that didn’t stop me from creating images of him in various spots in my neighborhood using Photoshop and a technique called compositing.
Compositing is simply the process of creating a single photo by combining two or more images. So, in my case, I used photos of Mr. Clooney that I found online, cut him out of each and inserted him into various photos of places around town, making it look like his photo was actually taken in those different locales.
Now I’ll be the first to admit that I hardly did a great job. But the resulting photos were good enough to amuse my friends and that was, after all, the point.
If you’re interested in trying your hand at compositing in Photoshop (and doing it right!), Gavin Hoey has recently done this great tutorial video on the subject.
You can find more helpful Photoshop videos at Gavin’s site at GavTrain.com.
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f you are just getting started in photography, exposure is one of the first things you need learn.
But even beyond that, getting a good handle on exposure and how the different components of exposure work together is essential if you want to take control of your photography and the images that you are creating.